Hilary Swank 36, was raised in Washington State. At 16, she and her mother moved to Los Angeles, so Swank could begin her acting career. At 18, she made her feature film debut in Buffy The Vampire Slayer, and then became a regular in the TV series Beverly Hills 90210. In 1999, she won her first Oscar for Boys Don’t Cry, in which she played a transsexual. A second Academy Award followed five years later, for her role as a boxer in Clint Eastwood’s Million Dollar Baby. Her latest film, The Resident, has just been released. She is divorced and lives in Los Angeles.
When were you happiest?
Being happy is not a constant. But I am very happy when I am spending time with my family and my friends, and going on hikes with my dogs.
What is your greatest fear?
Never getting another opportunity to act.
What is your earliest memory?
On a swing in Iowa, age three.
Which living person do you most admire, and why?
My mum, because I have seen how she has struggled and how she wants to continue to grow.
What was your most embarrassing moment?
Wearing a terrible pink dress for the Academy Awards one year. It didn’t look like Christian Dior, but it was.
Property aside, what’s the most expensive thing you’ve bought?
A Steinway piano. I try to play.
Where would you like to live?
What would your super power be?
To be able to read the future.
Who would play you in the film of your life?
What is your most unappealing habit?
I pick the skin on my lips.
What is your favourite smell?
What is your favourite word?
What is your favourite book?
Oh, The Places You’ll Go! by Dr Seuss.
What is the worst thing anyone’s said to you?
“When are you going to give up your hobby?” (A teacher in high school.)
What is your guiltiest pleasure?
Scones and clotted cream.
What do you owe your parents?
To whom would you most like to say sorry, and why?
I’ve said sorry to everyone I need to.
Who would you invite to your dream dinner party?
Which words or phrases do you most overuse?
What has been your biggest disappointment?
When things are disappointing, I know they are happening for a reason, so I try to find out why and learn from them.
When did you last cry, and why?
On Friday, because I got some bad news about a friend.
How do you relax?
On hikes with my dogs.
How often do you have sex?
Depends whether or not I’m in town.
What single thing would improve the quality of your life?
How would you like to be remembered?
What is the most important lesson life has taught you?
That things aren’t always what you think they are going to be.
Tell us a secret.
Every movie role I take scares the hell out of me and I don’t know if I’m going to be able to do it.